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Liberty Counsel Backs Student Who Penned Antigay Editorial

Liberty Counsel Backs Student Who Penned Antigay Editorial

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A right-wing legal group has taken up the cause of a Wisconsin high school student whose opinion piece opposing adoption by gays was pulled from the school paper.

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A right-wing legal group has taken up the cause of a Wisconsin high school student whose opinion piece opposing adoption by gays was pulled from the school paper.

Brandon Wegner and Maddie Marquardt, students at Shawano Community High School, wrote side-by-side editorials in the paper taking opposing viewpoints, local TV station WSAW reports. Wegner, citing Bible passages and discredited antigay psychologist Paul Cameron, said adoption by gays is "not right with God" and harmful to children. Marquardt said gay people "are as compassionate, caring and suitable parents as heterosexuals."

The editorials appeared in copies of the student paper distributed this month as an insert to the town newspaper, The Shawano Leader. After a gay resident complained about Wegner's column, school administrators apologized for the piece and pulled the page with both editorials from remaining copies to be distributed at the high school.

According to the right-wing Liberty Counsel, the district superintendent called Wegner in and told him the commentary was offensive and violated the school antibullying policy. The legal group, saying Wegner's First Amendment rights were violated, sent a letter this week demanding an apology to the student, distribution of the article, a promise to "no longer suppress the sincerely-held religious beliefs of students," and a revision of "unconstitutionally vague" school policies to allow such views to be heard. It pledges to "take all appropriate measures" if the demands are not met.

PDFs of the editorials and Liberty Counsel's letter are available on the group's website.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.